top
From the Open-Publishing Calendar
From the Open-Publishing Newswire
Indybay Feature
Sat Apr 7 2007
The Home Front: Resistance Spreads as Iraq Veterans Return
Sat Apr 7 2007
The Home Front: Resistance Spreads as Iraq Veterans Return
When Jeff Englehart, Thomas Cassidy, and Joe Hatcher joined the Army in early 2001 they were looking for a change of pace and some college money. A few months later, however, the Twin Towers were smoldering, the ‘war on terror’ was growing from their ashes, and what it meant to be a US soldier was changed dramatically. They three strangers met in the Army and soon found themselves stationed in Iraq, where they served in and around the violent Sunni Triangle from February 2004 until February 2005.

In addition to the ways of war, the Army taught them a lot about power, militarism, capitalism, and resistance. This rapid politicization left the three fighting on behalf of a government they didn’t believe in with little choice but to just wait for their three-year enlistments to be over. While still in Iraq, Englehart and Hatcher joined Iraq Veterans Against the War (IVAW); Cassidy followed suit soon after returning. Now they are tireless anti-war activists, dedicated full time to sharing their stories and ending all US aggression abroad. Fault Lines talked with them about their time in Iraq and their work since when they stopped in Berkeley as part of a recent West Coast mini-tour.

FL: I know that you're very politically engaged right now. But what kind of political awareness did you have when you joined the Army?

JE: Absolutely none. If I'd had any political awareness I wouldn't have even considered putting on the uniform of a United States soldier. My political education didn't come until I got to my unit. Basically what I realized real quick was I didn't like the army for its authority and its authoritative structure and I learned real quick what can happen when you’re placed in a situation when authority is rampant and it's in the hands of irresponsible people. I started reading books that were in opposition to what the military was doing across the globe—books like Chomsky and Howard Zinn, Emma Goldman, Kropotkin, things of that nature. Before I even got to Iraq I was aware of what was happening in the world just from reading these great books. But when you're tied to a system that governs you and rules you by fear, and the punishment for speaking out or acting against the grain can be jail, that fear over your head kept me in line enough to go to Iraq.

FL: How did this politicization affect your relationship to other soldiers?

Read More
08/29/16 Teo Valencia Family Files Federal Lawsuit Against City of Newark and Conrad Rogers Police State and Prisons | Racial Justice | East Bay | Government & Elections08/24/16 Filthy & Dehumanizing Santa Rita Jail to Improve Treatment of Women In Custody Front Page | Police State and Prisons | Womyn | East Bay08/20/16 Tribes Push Back Against Yet Another Threat to Clean Water Front Page | Environment & Forest Defense | Racial Justice | U.S.08/20/16 Grand Jury Releases Report on 2015 Jail Death of Krista DeLuca Front Page | Police State and Prisons | Health, Housing, and Public Services | Santa Cruz Indymedia08/20/16 Nationally-Coordinated Prisoner Work Stoppage on Anniversary of Attica Prison Uprising Front Page | Police State and Prisons | Global Justice and Anti-Capitalism | U.S.08/19/16 Renter Protections on the November Ballot for Six Bay Area Cities Front Page | Health, Housing, and Public Services | East Bay | Peninsula | California08/19/16 Bulletproof "Shoot First, Ask Questions Later" Training Relocated to San Jose Church Front Page | Police State and Prisons | South Bay | East Bay | California08/18/16 The PR Campaign to Uplift Police & Demonize Those Who Call for Accountability Front Page | Police State and Prisons | Racial Justice | Indymedia | San Francisco | California | U.S.08/14/16 California Coastal Commission Upholds Public Access for All Police State and Prisons | Environment & Forest Defense | Health, Housing, and Public Services | Government & Elections | Santa Cruz Indymedia08/14/16 Santa Cruz NAACP Plans Peace Party with Local Police Police State and Prisons | Racial Justice | Santa Cruz Indymedia08/11/16 Residents Look for New Places to Live Following Chinatown Homeless Sweeps Front Page | Health, Housing, and Public Services | Government & Elections | Santa Cruz Indymedia
Related Categories: U.S. | Anti-War | Fault Lines
Report: Sea Turtle Nesting Beaches at Risk due to Climate Change Joanna McWilliams Monday Aug 29th 10:21 AM
Generation Y Doesn't Fulfill Expectations Thorsten Schroeder Monday Aug 29th 4:34 AM
September 9th National Prison Strike The Ex-Worker Thursday Aug 25th 11:51 AM
1.8 Million Acres of Sierra Nevada Habitat Protected for Imperiled Frogs, Toads Center for Biological Diversity Thursday Aug 25th 10:18 AM
Winnemem Wintu Tribe supports the Standing Rock Sioux Protectors Winnemem Wintu Tribe Tuesday Aug 23rd 4:21 PM
Grazing in National Forest Restricted to Protect Rare California Frogs, Toads Center for Biological Diversity Monday Aug 22nd 4:23 PM
Louisiana Floods: in their own words, stories and how to help WTUL News & Views Monday Aug 22nd 6:08 AM
California Mission Foundation Tries to Declare El Camino Real a UNESCO World Heritage Site via Amah Mutsun Tribal Band (1 comment) Monday Aug 22nd 2:25 AM
Citizen Reporting of Great Louisiana Flood of 2016 WTUL News and Views Thursday Aug 18th 8:51 AM
No Dakota Pipeline - tribes push back against yet another threat to clean water Corina Roberts (1 comment) Wednesday Aug 17th 2:35 PM
Rohrabacher-Farr Amendment Continutes to Help Medical Marijuana Defendants in Federal Court Americans for Safe Access (1 comment) Wednesday Aug 17th 2:12 PM
Hearing in Lawsuit Compelling USDA to Pull Foie Gras From Shelves via Animal Legal Defense Fund Tuesday Aug 16th 6:20 PM
Nationally Coordinated Prisoner Workstoppage Prisoners from across the United States (2 comments) Tuesday Aug 16th 10:26 AM
The Digitalization of Labor Patrick Stary Monday Aug 15th 7:07 AM
Ashlei Mason Burns an Innocent Animal Alive AnimalJustice890 (1 comment) Sunday Aug 14th 8:19 AM
New Orleans Drug Policy Update August 2016 WTUL News & Views Sunday Aug 14th 7:52 AM
Dr Sylvia Earle at ASIH New Orleans 2016 wtul news and ASIH (1 comment) Friday Aug 12th 7:38 AM
Feds’ Approval of GE Mosquito Release Doesn’t Account for Risk via Center for Food Safety Thursday Aug 11th 5:48 PM
COINTELPRO action, not "Anonymous" video. Silas Weatherby Thursday Aug 11th 2:36 PM
Public Records Sought Over Federal Surveillance of Climate Protesters Center for Biological Diversity Thursday Aug 11th 1:54 PM
Basic Income: 80% of New Jobs are Low Wage Andrew Stern Tuesday Aug 9th 8:02 AM
Must demand that nuclear-armed states disarm Jackie Cabasso, Marylia Kelley, Tom Webb Saturday Aug 6th 11:00 AM
Scorecard of 50 Police Body Camera Programs Shows Failure to Protect Civil Rights via The Leadership Conference Friday Aug 5th 12:39 AM
More News...